Let me tell you a secret

How I love an exciting new discovery. I recently went to a fascinating seminar on game recognition and preparation (more to come in a later blog) by the knowledgable and charming Jose Souto, who is the chief lecturer in culinary arts at Westminster Kingsway College.

The college is well-known for its excellent culinary courses and has produced chefs like Jamie Oliver and Ainsley Harriot.

What it’s not so well-known (well, I certainly didn’t know about it) for is its two restaurants, which are open to the public. The perfect environment for students to practise their trade from the second year of their course onwards. The food is highly impressive and it’s a great way to enjoy a fantastic meal for a great price.

The Brasserie is open for lunch Monday to Friday and for dinner on selected evenings between 6 and 9. The menu offers tasty choices with starters like crispy hens egg, white bean puree and chorizo oil, cassoulet of petit gris snails and ham hock terrine with piccalilli, all for just £6 each. Main courses include things like pan-fried sea bass fillet, pancetta-wrapped pheasant supreme, pan-roasted Barnsley chop and Rope-grown mussels at prices from £10 to £13.

The Escoffier Restaurant is their fine-dining establishment and is open for lunch from Monday to Friday. The tasting menu is £25 for canapes and six courses. You will be able to taste things like ballotine of quail, shellfish consomme, confit salmon, roast rump of beef and the dessert I had in the Brasserie on the day of my visit. Such amazing value.

As I was there to celebrate the wonder of British game, it was only appropriate that we had it for lunch in the Brasserie. A fabulous lunch with a starter of pigeon and main course of partridge. Plus a stunning dessert.

The pigeon was quite a revelation for me as it was beautifully smoked and the raspberries went just perfectly with the tender meat.

Wood pigeon salad, candied walnuts and raspberry vinaigrette
Pan-roasted breast of partridge with braised red cabbage, fondant potato, seared fois gras and madeira jus
Chocolate torte with seared caramelised clementine and praline ice cream

Find at more at www.thevincentrooms.com

Westminster Kingsway College is at Vincent Square, London SW1, just behind Victoria train station.


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